Blog post written by ICU’s incoming Trans Representative of the LGBTQ+ Network, Haru Yeoh (he/him)
Transgender Day of Awareness (TDoR) is observed annually on 20th November to commemorate trans people who have been passed as a result of negligence from the healthcare system, murder, suicide and a multitude of other reasons. The day was founded to draw attention to the continued violence and injustice directed towards transgender people.
TDoR is a reminder that violence against transgender people is still rampant; two in five trans people have experienced a hate crime or incident due to their gender identity within the last 12 months as written in the Trans Report by Stonewall.
TDoR was started in 1999 by a small group of transgender rights activists Gwendolyn Ann Smith, Nancy Nangeroni and Jahaira DeAlto as a vigil in memory of Rita Hester, a black transgender woman killed in 1998. Rita Hester was murdered in Allston, Massachusetts on 28 November 1998. In response to her untimely murder, a candlelight vigil was held the following Friday, in which about 250 people participated. The vigil commemorated transgender individuals lost to violence and anti-transgender bigotry. A typical TDoR memorial includes a reading of the names of transgender individuals who have passed from 1 October of the previous year to 30 September of the current year.
You can participate in TDoR by attending the vigil organised by Not A Phase, a trans-led grassroots charity that aims to support trans+ adults. The vigil will be held in Soho Square on 20 November from 6.30-8.30pm.
If you are interested in learning more about trans injustices: Stonewall Trans Report
If you are struggling with your gender identity, there is help out there. Here are some organisations external to Imperial which you might find useful to explore:
If you have any further questions, please feel free to reach out to the Union’s LGBTQ+ Officer, Avi (she/her) on firstname.lastname@example.org